SpaceX is ‘our largest private employer,’ says Brownsville mayor

SpaceX has more than 1,600 direct employees at its rocket manufacturing facility in Boca Chica, Brownsville Mayor Trey Mendez said Thursday during his state of the city address.

And 71% of those workers are residents of the Rio Grande Valley.

“Not only have they become our largest private employer, but they have recently added a substantial presence in the city for various operations,” he said.

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Elon Musk’s commercial space company is developing and testing its Starship spacecraft and Super Heavy rocket outside Brownsville. These vehicles are designed to take humans to the Moon and Mars.

According to a recent economic impact study, SpaceX invested $430 million in operations last year in Cameron County, Mendez said. This included payroll, construction and capital improvements.

This year, the company expects to add $885 million in gross economic output for Cameron County along with continued job growth.

Inside the Brownsville city limits, SpaceX has leased 46,000 square feet in the Brownsville Aerospace Industrial Park, located at Brownsville South Padre Island International Airport. He invested $500,000 to renovate and modernize the facility.

“These are definitely out-of-this-world numbers,” Mendez said.

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